You know what’s cool about the word “queue”? You can remove its last four letters, and it’s still pronounced the same way. Of course, it’s also pronounced the same way as the word “cue.” Are you spelling the word you intend to? (I’m looking at you, American writers.)
- “Cue” (noun) means either a signal prompting an action (e.g., she entered the stage after her cue) or the long stick used in the game of billiards.
- “Cue” (verb) means to act as a prompt or reminder (e.g., my writing tip cued you to write “cue” correctly) or to ready a piece of audio/video for play (e.g., he cued up the movie).
- “Queue” (noun) means a line of people waiting. It also has definitions when it comes to computing, but those are a bit too technical to define here.
- “Queue” (verb) means to get in line.
- “Que” is not an English word.
“Queue” vs. “cue” does get a bit confusing, because both can be used with the preposition “up.” One can cue up something, and one can queue up. Taking your time to remember is important, though.
Brits seem more comfortable with the difference between these words. In the U.S., people often use the “cue” form for everything. But let’s be better than that, Americans. I have faith in you.